Socialist Worker

The EU is no friend to workers

Issue No. 2508

TUC leader Frances OGrady

TUC leader Frances O'Grady (Pic: Flickr/The Weekly Bull)


The Trades Union Congress (TUC) and most trade union leaders have played a disgraceful role during the EU referendum debate.

As the Tories savage public services and ram through the most serious anti-union laws for a generation, the TUC is obsessed with boosting Remain.

Apparently workers’ rights would be in danger if we left the EU. But if we stay in the warm embrace of the EU and David Cameron, then we can move forward to a progressive future.

What nonsense! If you want to see the EU’s role, look at its ceaseless demands for Greek workers to face round after round of cuts and privatisation.

Look at its recent recommendations for France, where it backs cuts in the minimum wage and an assault on employment rights.

It is precisely such attacks that French workers are battling—and the EU is firmly on the other side.

As for supporting migrants, the latest evidence of the EU’s weakness came on Tuesday.

An attempt to challenge the Tories’ right to deny EU migrants access to child benefit and child tax credits was expected to be thrown out by European judges.

Congratulations to those unions that have campaigned against austerity, Fortress Europe and for a Leave vote.

Instead of backing the ruling class’s dominant choice in the referendum, we need fighting unions that support and encourage resistance.


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